How to Use Ephemera Step 5, We’re at the Final Step

One can never pay in gratitude: one can only pay “in kind” somewhere else in life.

~ Anne Morrow Lindbergh

I finished up the painting that I’ve been creating in the How to Use Ephemera Series (if you missed it, head back to Step 1).

This step is way less about applying the ephemera, and way more about painting the foreground.  It is my final step in the whole process, though, and I wanted you to see how the background does make a difference in the finished piece.  You can see some of the ephemera from the first step here at the end.

The flowers here are a really royal purple, I’m not sure that it translates very well from the iPhone camera to the computer to the blog, but you get the idea.  I think.  I used acrylic paint on the flowers, sumi ink and Faber-Castell sepia ink on the shadows and stems.  The entire series is sealed with a final coat of clear matte poly-urethane spray.

Here for you is the series of the three pieces together:

One of the things I love best is that the papers in the first step of the background are old advertisements and pages from almanacs and old sheet music.  I collect that stuff from all over the place, you should see the stacks in my studio!  People think I’m crazy when I’m digging through old drawers in junk shops and garage sales and estate sales.  They think they’re selling the dresser or cabinet or whatever; I’m wanting anything left inside the furniture!

As a quick side note, or maybe it’s more the pre-note to this whole thing: I actually first worked a page in an art journal that led to the series on canvas.  The journal page has things on it that I really liked and meant to incorporate into the canvases, but I ended up missing a bit during the background building of the canvas.  It was not anything that I wanted in the foreground, and since I missed the application during the initial steps, it was just left out.  How you layer things and in what order becomes super important in how the final piece flows.  With more experimenting you will find out which things you want on the piece and in what order.

The only thing I will complete at some point on this grouping is the framing.  I have in mind what I want, and I will get to it at some point.  I’ll post a quick pic when I get that done.

I hope you enjoyed this series as much as I enjoyed putting it out here.  So many times I have run across blogs or videos that showed me a technique that inspired and motivated me to try something new.  I hope this has done that for y’all, it’s my way of giving back to the community that has helped me in so many unknown ways.  Thanks for sharing it with me!


9 thoughts on “How to Use Ephemera Step 5, We’re at the Final Step

  1. Thanks so much for the interesting tutorial. I love the way you covered the entire surface with the various papers. I hadn’t even thought this way–I had used papers here and there but I like this look. The ink and vellum is something I had never seen before also–another way to add layers and more interest. The final step, painting the flowers, taught me a lesson. Simple is best! I tend to get too complicated and end up with too much stuff on the page. I really learned a lot from this–it was great of you to share 🙂

    • Hi Marge,
      I really really appreciate your feedback, and I’m thrilled that you got something that you can use from it!!
      Thanks for your sweet thoughts, and for joining me for this 🙂

  2. Thanks so much for the interesting tutorial. I started on the last page and had to go back and check them all out. It’s always fun to see how each person adds their own personal bits to each piece. I loved your tile idea and also using walnut ink, I have some but haven’t used it on anything mixed media.

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